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Home Forums TR Archive California Eastside 5.31 and 6.1.2008 westside sierra – mineral king reprise

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    had to go back for more after the previous weekend. much of the new snow melted off especially at lower elevations and the valley was looking more like it should this time of year, lush green. dutch marc and bgnight joined me this weekend for a return to the mineral king area. it was another great weekend riding and camping on the westside.

    day 1 we decided to go up to the franklin lakes basin and check out what was available. i had not been up to that area before and looked forward to the potential of the terrain up there.

    dutch just entering the bottom of the basin. it was pretty much dry trail for most of the approach.

    that face on the right was what we ended up skinning up, which is on the backside of tulare peak.

    there is a big dam up there. kinda wierd middle of nowhere 10k ft, there it is.

    bgnight was much faster than dutch and i. he also took a slightly different approach but ended up in the same place. he was hiking this ridge and decided to drop a nice little line and ride back to us.

    dutch skining up, it was kinda steep here.

    bgnight decided to climb on rock instead.

    brooks on the final approach up to tulare peak. he ended up decending the line going to the left (east) and dutch and I rode the northwest side (on the right side there). we all ended up in the same area where we started.

    looking across the canyon to the east face of vandever

    dutch on the ridge that connects to the peak. the clouds were creeping out of the central valley and up to the mtns.

    BG on tulare peak

    anyway the clouds came in rather quickly and visbility dropped quickly. BG figured it was time to get going and dropped his line. it looked nice 😀

    i shot off barely just a couple frames before he vanished into the cloud cover. he radioed in he made it down OK so we got ready to go down the other side.

    waiting a bit paid off as the clouds lifted sorta

    the snow was good, but a bit wet and sticky. the glide wax really helped. at least that fresh snow last week filled in all the suncups nicely. only observed minor point releases, overall stable conditions. dutch and i ended up riding out in the farewell canyon which had a nice snow finger all the way down to about 8100 ft. then we cached our boards and some other gear since we planned to return to the area on sunday. hiking out with the light load was nice!

    day 2

    this peak has some nice lines.

    going back up farewell canyon to retrieve our gear and skin up the snow finger back to this feature called the farewell gap.

    lots of little feeder creeks drop down the canyon walls

    going up the snow finger. it was pretty warm on sunday.

    tracks – big – not human

    farewell gap

    nice line on the peak across the way from the gap


    brooks decided to go and check out sequoia nat’l park so it was just me and dutch on sunday. we hiked up back towards the gap, then i hiked up solo a little line on the east side of vandever. it was another very good day.

    so much wildlife up there! the deer really like this valley and were just hanging out everywhere

    tulare peak is the one in the middle

    these little guys were everywhere

    white chief bowl


    Looks like your second day was fun
    I’m already jonesing for more turns. It was fun hanging out in minersal king w/ you guys. The water sure is loud and cold there ;).

    Here’s my pics. This place would be such an epic place to basecamp out of in the winter. There is something to do for every concievable condition

    Large Sequoia on drive in:

    Florence and Tulare peak on right:

    Tulare Peak w/ Dave and Dutch’s first day run on left:

    Sawtooth Peak:

    The long dry hike out. At least it’s flat:

    The creek crossings were interesting in the morning when things were slippery. Don’t fall Dave!:

    Skin stoke: (I decided to splitboot the whole day. And yes, w/ my splitboard)

    Track stoke from my first run:

    Dave doing some really steep skinning. I wouldn’t even consider skinning something this steep. It’s exposed above rock too. Dutch took a slide about a 50ft slide in splitmode and banged himself up over some rock. He was fine though. I don’t think he was happy about losing vertical though 😆

    A view of Tulare Peak and D&D’s run on left from my first run:

    View looking north from Tulare peak:

    Florence Peak. There’s a sweet chute in the middle of the two peaks that looks like fun:

    View to south where D&D rode the second day:

    Clouds rolling in. I left my tennis shoes down the drainage so had to ride a different route to go get them. (lookers right in pic below) The run I rode was pretty epic though. It was better visibility than Dave’s photo’s suggest and it was long, wide open, w/ lots of gs turns on great snow.

    Mama and baby bear tracks:

    Lots of waterfalls around:


    Nice. That’s a cool area. I remember heading up to Franklin Lakes years ago in the summer and hiking around under Florence Peak, thinking that would be awesome snowboarding terrain. Cool to see it with some snow.


    F2Oh, BG and dm, great TR. That area looks amazing be it wildlife, splitboarding or hiking. Thanks for sharing. I did not notice any shots in darkness though, a staple of both Fullers2Oh and BGnight. Is the sun rising too early and staying up too late?

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